Instagram is launching new in-app QR codes worldwide in an upcoming update of the app. The feature is designed to allow businesses to create QR codes so that upon scanning the codes customers can quickly and easily access their Instagram page for information. Customers will be able to get details like store hours, prices and follow the account if they want. Instagram QR codes were initially launched in Japan and now the company is launching the feature worldwide.
Previously, the social media giant had ‘Nametags’ which were also like QR codes, but they could be used only through the internal Instagram camera. The new feature allows users to scan QR codes from any third-party app that supports scanning, including the phone’s camera. Users need to have the latest version of the app to access this feature.
Instagram QR Codes
With the amount of time Instagram took to roll out this feature, it still feels like the company left a lot of room for improvement. The QR codes work fine but they are not easily accessible in the app. Users need to head to their profiles, tap on the burger (more) menu, and then select QR codes.
The social media giant says that the reason behind the global release of the new feature is mostly to help small businesses grow their communities on the app. The company explains that this is even more important now that it learns innovative ways to engage and interact with others:
“We know the road ahead for small businesses such as restaurants and shops may be challenging, so we want to continue building tools to help them get discovered and connect with people in new ways. By scanning a QR code via Instagram, customers will be taken to a business’ profile on Instagram and be able to see updated store hours, buy goods or services or seek more info.”
Instagram is not the first company that has decided to incorporate the use of QR codes. The codes are becoming increasingly helpful in public places due to the demand for ‘contactless experience’ as a health precautionary measure due to the coronavirus pandemic. However, this new feature might be beneficial for the social platform to offer an alternative digital marketplace for small to large businesses; notably with the addition of a separate ‘Shop’ section in the discover feed.
Instagram launches New Suggested Posts Feature
In addition to QR codes, the social media tech giant is expanding its feed today with the launch of ‘suggested posts’. These suggested posts, from accounts that users do not follow, will show up after they have reached the end of their feeds. The app will give users the option to keep scrolling with the app’s suggestions.
Although the expansion of the app’s feed will help the company in terms of further monetization through ads and maximizing the screen time of users, the suggested posts feature seemingly goes against the stance Instagram took 2 years ago on wanting to introduce features and tools that would help reduce the screen time of users for their mental well-being.
via The Verge